Franka Hörnschemeyer

A small, quiet forest near a war cemetery, underground canalization facilities, the open space bordering a government building, a museum space containing famous artworks – these are all spaces Franka Hörnschemeyer artistically loads with meaning, interpreting them anew in light of significance since shifted or forgotten. The commonality all these places share is the indication they give of intangible layers of sense-based perception closely bound up with their function and history, variegated levels that to date remain unknown to the users of these spaces.

Franka Hörnschemeyer’s sculptural interventions now make these layers able to be seen and experienced. Her 2011 reinterpretation of the unspectacular natural space near the Neugnadenfeld war cementary – a walk-through path that follows an acoustic exhibition invoking sensitive, touching traumatic memories – was created along these very lines. Similarly precise and uncompromising was her 2001 treatment of the inner courtyard of Berlin’s Paul Löbe Haus, which has since that time featured a labyrinthine structure reminiscent of the ideologically and spatially oppressive German-German border. With her elegant outside sculpture, “Trichter” (finished in 2011), installed in Dresden’s city center, she disclosed a perspective on the urban systems that serve to manage public resources and, with that, on the buried themes of existence, civilization and, finally, their fragility.

The strategies Franka Hörnschemeyer uses invoke an age-old principle used to establish truth – that of Socratic maieutics, also called intellectual “midwifery.” Adherents of this principle pose questions to their opponents, compelling them to lay bare contradictions and develop insights; however, in the case of Franka Hörnschemeyer, this opponent, rather than being a person, is a spatial, social or cultural situation with conflicts and peculiarities that surface over the course of artistic interrogation. In this undertaking, Franka Hörnschemeyer uses sculptural means that could not be more unassuming and iconographic, often entailing the use of standardized concrete-pouring molds that are used to outline a typical space to be constructed before it is built and that remain invisibly present within its final cubic content. In many of Franka Hörnschemeyer’s works, such elements serve as something like systems of mental guidance, structuring the physical space to be discovered anew. In the context of galleries and interior spaces, too, she follows her methods of three-dimensional reinterpretation by temporarily rearranging such spatial elements as worn-out exhibition construction items, doors and acoustic panels, and lending them a sculptural aura that goes beyond their no longer existent functionality. Here, too, it is a matter of reminiscence, the memory of the material and the fleeting significance of human constructions.

Susanne Altmann ©2012  

Solo Exhibitions (selection)


»Franka Hörnschemeyer« , galerie baer, Dresden

»Koordinaten«, Skulptur im öffentlichen Raum, kunstwegen, Nordhorn

»Trichter«, Einweihung Skulptur im öffentlichen Raum, Seetor Dresden

»Franka Hörnschemeyer«, Skulpturensammlung Dresden

»Franks International«, display, Wilhelm Hack Museum, Ludwigshafen


»In the Presence of Noise«, Galerie Nordenhake, Berlin

Participations (selection)


»Surf + Anarchie + Alchemie«, Amtsrichterhaus, Schwarzenbek

»Umstülpung«, Galerie Nordenhake, Berlin


»Wir sind alle Astronauten«, MARTa Herford


»Kniebeugen. Erinnern, Vergessen, Besetzen«, Temporäre Kunsthalle, Berlin



born in Osnabrück, Germany


Academy of fine Arts, Hamburg


visiting professor at the California Institute oft he Arts in Valencia, Los Angeles

seit 2009

professor an der Academy of fine Arts Bremen

lives and works in Berlin

Prizes and fellowships


MFI prize – Kunst am Bau


art prize oft the city Nordhorn


1. Preiz at the competion of desing the Seetores in Dresden


Friedrich-Vordemberge-Preiz oft he city Köln




Deutsch Study Center in Venice


Kunstfond eV Bonn · Fellowship


Fellowship oft he german academy for exchange in New York


Fellowship of the Deutschen Volk




"Franka Hörnschemeyer" · Susanne Altmann · 2012

Franka Hörnschemeyer · »Modell« · 6 2/3 x 9 x 7 1/2 in (17 x 23 x 19 cm) · 3D-print · 2010

Franka Hörnschemeyer · »Raumkonstruktionen« · variable size · partition walling · 2011

Franka Hörnschemeyer · »discrete case II« · 102 1/3 x 118 x 98 1/2 in (260 x 300 x 250 cm) · cast aluminum, partition walling · 2010

Franka Hörnschemeyer · »Franks International« · 12 min 39 sec · Video-DVD, Pal Colour · 2008

Franka Hörnschemeyer · »Franks Internationaln 6029« · 36 1/4 x 29 1/4 in (92 x 74 cm) · Piezo-Print · 2007/2011

Franka Hörnschemeyer · »Screening 1013« · size variable · aluminum plates · 2013